Tag Archives: Witchcraft

Witchcraft into the Wilds

Rachel Patterson’s Witchcraft into the Wilds, reviewed by Cosmic Dancer

Yet another fabulous book by Rachel, this really takes you back to working with nature, very down to earth and showing you just how easy it is. You don’t need to buy fancy things, as mother nature provides these things. I loved the journal prompt too, documenting what you do is a brilliant way to look back and advance you work if you’re new to this path. Lots of very practical advice, these books just get better and better.

More on the publisher’s website – http://www.moon-books.net/books/witchcraft-into-wilds 

What’s wrong with being a witch?

I don’t know what angered me more—that tea party candidate Christine O’Donnell trashed witchcraft or that people have a problem with a Wiccan running for political office. I wasn’t the only pagan upset about this.

When I first saw the video with O’Donnell admitting to dabbling in witchcraft, I thought she was a nut ball and was glad she wouldn’t get elected since the majority of conservatives are Christian. But then I realized that by thinking that way, I was being as narrow-minded as everyone else that objects to any non-Christian religion.

Why couldn’t someone with a brain admit to being a witch? Someone who could explain Wicca/pagan practices correctly? Pagans had a chance to have a voice and instead were aligned with Devil worshippers.

So, what’s wrong with being a witch? Nothing, unless witches are truly as horrible as Christine O’Donnell described them. Thanks to her rambling nonsense, witches will have to work even harder to fix an already tarnished reputation among the mainstream population. Pagans do not worship the Devil, they don’t even believe in the Devil. The Devil is a Christian invention. I can see how people get confused, especially when the dictionary doesn’t even get it right. A witch practices Wicca.

It would be awesome to have a Wiccan elected to a political office, but it was obvious from the way O’Donnell giggled and babbled in the video that she wasn’t serious about being a witch, and she didn’t know what she was talking about. And, Ms. O’Donnell, you don’t dabble in witchcraft. Witchcraft/paganism is a lifestyle.

Kelley Heckart

‘Timeless tales of romance, conflict & magic’





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The Inherent Mother

This is the story that made me really want to get writing on Real News of relevance to Pagans:


OK, it’s a commentary page rather than a News story. But it’s something that’s been on my mind for a while, and I find it hard to believe that I’m alone.

As pagans, we take the idea of the Goddess as Maiden, Mother and Crone pretty much for granted – it’s one of those things you learn right from the start, in the first (and fifty-first) Paganism 101 book.

The only time I’ve seen an alternative, in fact, is in a recent issue of Sagewoman magazine, suggesting an addition to the tripartate Lady – the Queen. This is the stage of womanhood after childbearing and rearing, but before menopause, when a woman really starts to live her life for herself. A lovely idea, and one I’d embrace wholeheartedly, if it were applicable.

But how many of us ladies have encountered a lack of place in such a system for us? (I know some gentlemen friends who feel similarly excluded from the God role, whether as homosexual, transgendered or simply for the same reasons I’m going into here, just from a male perspective – but I don’t think I’m equipped  to discuss that, so will leave it to one of the chaps. Hopefully they’ll be able to read this post regardless. As last time, I promise it won’t turn into a feminist rant.)

I’m a woman in my thirties, who has yet to feel any broodiness or longing for a child. I won’t discount it as a future possibility, but from childhood myself, I never really saw it as something I’d want to do. As with the women in the article, there are a variety of reasons, and with the efficacy of birth control, I count myself fortune that I can continue with my life without any small attachments as yet.

This doesn’t mean I’m some sort of uncaring harridan, the old-school spinster type. I have a loving partner, pets and busy life with many friends I care for deeply. I am not beholden to my career either, simply to living my life as fully as I can, with my faith as a strong part of that.

However, as the BBC discovered, some women cannot take such a lifestyle choice quietly. I know of like-minded ladies who have been openly confronted with such wisdom as ‘if you don’t have children, you aren’t a proper woman’. Their fitness to BE women is actually questioned because they take the option open to them not to be mothers – and this is before their faith even enters the argument.

Even in the 21st century, women’s roles are still tacitly assumed to be limited to their gendered skills – specifically Jerry Hall’s famous quote. In pagan circles, as we struggle for recognition in the modern world while endeavouring to recognise our ancestry, there is still only the Maiden, Mother and Crone. What place in there for me?

When placed in ritual, I’ve seen the confused faces as roles are assigned and realisation dawns. I’m usually planted somewhere between the Maiden and the Mother (presumably No-longer-a-Maiden-but-Not-a-Mother-Yet).

Men don’t seem to have this problem in society generally – there’s no stigma against a ‘confirmed bachelor’ – but in pagan rites you somehow aren’t so confined. You may be Brother, Son, Warrior, Lover… the comparative workings of your loins are not (necessarily) up for public debate.

But there are options – we’ve all seen them. Acting as Priestess, you’re effectively ‘mother’ to the group as a whole (whether you are in daily life or not). We’ll all be Maidens and Crones, but are also fully able to act as Carers, with all the responsibility that this conveys, without having actually given birth ourselves.

I certainly understand the importance of mothers – both in actuality, as a central point of our being, and in the larger, global sense of Earth and Goddess. But can we not also be Women, strong in heart, mind and body, without a small person to confirm it?

I know my Goddess can.

39 Days of Prayer – Day 22

Day 22 – Connection

I enter into this day with the intention of self evolution

That I may grow and change into the healthy, whole person I am meant to be

Keep me mindful, Goddess

of your light that lives within me

I know you whisper to my mind, heart, and spirit

Prepare me to hear your voice as loud and clear as my own.

Help me to trust my intuition without fear, and to embrace my insights without embarrassment.

Teach me to sit still, and to wait on your instruction in all situations.

Remind me that no answer is my answer.

And please impart these lessons Goddess, with gentleness and love.

Thank you, Lady.

Blessed Be.

An Ancient Invocation to Lakshmi

This is the Sri Sukta, a devotional hymn dedicated to Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, abundance, prosperity and fertility.  It is found in the Rigveda, an ancient and sacred Indian collection of Vedic Sanskrit hymns.  It is said that for the adoration of Lakshmi, there is no hymn equal to the Sri Sukta.

I have used this hymn as a devotional prayer when I feel it is necessary to my life, and it always produces amazing results in both material and spiritual form. I make the dedication to perform it for an allotment of time (ie saying the prayer three times a day for 33 days) as it teaches me discipline as well as opening me spiritually to the gifts of Lakshmi. I have included the Sanskrit as well as the English translation.

Hopefully it aids some of you as well, in your writing and in your lives!

Śrīm Hiraņya varnám hariņīm suvarna-rajata-srajám
Chandrám hiranmayīm lakshmīm jatavedo ma avaha|(1)
Hrīm Tám ma ávaha játavedo lakśhmīm anapa gáminīm
Yasyám hiraņyam vindeyam gám aśvam puruśhán aham|| (2)

(1-2) Invoke for you O Agni, the Goddess Lakshmi, who shines like gold, yellow in hue, wearing gold and silver garlands, blooming like the moon, the embodiment of wealth. O Agni! Invoke for me that unfailing Lakshmi, blessed by whom, I shall win wealth, cattle, horses and men.

Klīm Aśhwa-pūrvám ratha-madhyám hasti náda prabódhiním
Śhriyam devím upahvaye śhrír ma devír jushatám| (3)
Aim Kám sósmitám hiranya prákárám árdrám jvalantím triptám tarpayantím
Padme sthitám padma-varnám támihópahvaye śhriyam|| (4)

(3-4) I invoke Shri (Lakshmi) who has a line of horses in her front, a series of chariots in the middle, who is being awakened by the trumpeting of elephants, who is divinely resplendent. May that divine Lakshmi grace me. I hereby invoke that Shri (Lakshmi) who is the embodiment of absolute bliss; who is of pleasant smile on her face; whose lustre is that of burnished gold; who is wet as it were, (just from the milky ocean) who is blazing with splendour, and is the embodiment of the fulfillment of all wishes; who satisfies the desire of her votaries; who is seated on the lotus and is beautiful like the lotus.

Souh:  Chandrám prabhásám yaśhasá jvalantím śhriyam lóke deva justám udárám
Tám padminim-ím saranam aham prapadye’ alakshmír me naśyatám tvám vrne| (5)
Ǒm Ǎditya varne tapasó dhijátó vanaspatis tava vrikshó’ tha bilvah
Tasya phalani tapsá nudantu mayántaráyás cha báhya alakshmíh|| (6)

(5-6) I resort to that Lakshmi for shelter in this world, who is beautiful like the moon, who shines bright, who is blazing with renown, which is adored (even) by the gods, which is highly magnanimous, and grand like the lotus. May my misfortunes perish. I surrender myself to You, O resplendent like the Sun! By your power and glory, plants like the bael tree have grown up. may the fruits thereof destroy through the grace of all inauspiciousness rising from the inner organs and ignorance as well from the outer senses.

Hrīm Upaitu mám deva-sakah kírtis cha maniná saha
Prádūr bhūtó’ smi rashtre’ smin kírtim riddhim dadátu me| (7)
Śrīim Kshut pipásá-amalám jyesthám alakshmím náshayámy aham
Abhūtim asamriddhim cha sarván nirnuda me grihat|| (8)

(7-8) O Lakshmi! I am born in this country with the heritage of wealth. May the friends of Lord Siva (Kubera, Lord of wealth and Fame), come to me. May these (having take their abode with me), bestow on me fame and prosperity. I shall destroy the elder sister to Lakshmi, the embodiment of inauspiciousness and such evil as hunger, thirst and the like. O Lakshmi! Drive out from my abode all misfortunes and poverty.

Ka e í la Hrīm Gandha dvárám durá dharşhám nitya-pushtám karíshiním
Iśhvarígm sarva bhūtánám tám ihó pahvaye śhriyam| (9)
Ha Sa Ka Hala Hrīm Manasah kámam ákūtím vácah satyam ashímahi
Paśhūnágm rūpam annasya mayi śríh shrayatám yaśhah|| (10)

(9-10) I hereby invoke Lakshmi (Shri), whose (main) avenue of perception is the odoriferous sense (i.e., one who abides mainly in cows); who is incapable of defeat or threat from anyone; who is ever healthy (with such virtuous qualities as truth); whose grace is seen abundantly in the refuse of cows (the cows being sacred); and who is supreme over all created beings. O Lakshmi! May we obtain and enjoy the fulfillment of our desires and our volitions, the veracity of our speech, the wealth of cattle, the abundance of varieties of food to eat! May prosperity and fame reside in me.

Sa Ka La Hrīm Kardamená praja-bhūtá mayi sambhava kardama
Śriyam vásaya me kule mátaram padma-máliním| (11)
Souh: Ǎpah srijantu snigdháni chiklíta vasa me grihe
Nicha devím mátaram śhriyam vásaya me kule|| (12)

(11-12) Lakshmi! You have progeny in Kardama. (Hence) O Kardama, may you reside in me. Make Mother Shri with garlands of lotuses to have Her abode in my (ancestral) line. may the (holy) waters create friendship (they being of adhesive nature). O Chiklita (progeny of Shri)! Reside at my home; and arrange to make Divine Mother Shri stay in my lineage!

Aim Ardám pushkariním pushtim pingalám padma máliním
Chandrám hiran-mayím lakshmím játavedó ma ávaha| (13)
Klīm Ǎrdhám yah kariním yashtim suvarnám hema-máliním
Sūryám hiran-mayím lakshmím játavedó ma ávaha|| (14)

(13-14) Invoke for me, O Agni, Lakshmi who shines like gold, is brilliant like the sun, who is powerfully fragrant, who wields the rod of suzerainty, who is the form of supreme rulership, who is radiant with ornaments and is the goddess of wealth. Invoke for me O Agni, the Goddess Lakshmi who shines like gold, blooms like the moon, who is fresh with anointment (of fragrant scent), who is adorned with the lotuses (lifted up by celestial elephants in the act of worship), who is the presiding deity of nourishment, who is yellow in colour, and who wears garlands of lotuses.

Hrīm Tám ma ávaha játevedó lakshmím anapa gáminím yasyám
Hiranyam prabhūtam gávó dásyó aśván vindeyam purushan aham|| (15)

(15)Invoke for me O Agni, that Goddess Lakshmi, who is ever unfailing, being blessed by whom I shall win wealth in plenty, cattle, servants, horses and men.

Śrīm Ǒm mahá-devyai cha vidmahe, vishnu-patnaiya cha dhímahi
Tanno Lakshmíh prachódayát || (16)

We commune ourselves with the Great Goddess, and meditate on the consort of Vishnu; may that Lakshmi direct us (to the Great Goal).

Ǒm Shántih, Shántih, Shántih.

Om May there be Peace, Peace, Peace.


A Compendium of Magickal Practice

Oestara Publishing announces the publication of a new book on magick in time for Halloween, or Samhain as Pagans call the holiday where the beloved dead are remembered. A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex by Sapnabella and Axis will be available October as an e-book and a paperback.  A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex is written in two voices—his and hers, echoing the divine compliment of the Lord and Lady. Sapnabella and Axis are a Pagan couple who compliment each other’s magickal Workings. Sapnabella is a Wiccan High Priestess and a Witch born who has a private practice in dream interpretation and divination, and she has led magickal Workings of many kinds for years. Axis is an especially pure Channel who has led many workshops on Pagan parenting and on developing psychic talents. He roamed Latin America for many years learning South American magickal techniques and teachings and then came to the US where he refined his psychic abilities and spiritual views.

A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex is designed to help Pagans  advance in their magickal undertakings. By presenting a progressed learning chain that exercises and develops the sub skills common to most magickal tasks, A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex enables Pagans to return to their own form of magick strengthened in power. This means that important areas of magick are re-examined in new ways as parts of a learning chain. The chapter “Channeling,” for instance, details how the individual her or himself can channel accurate and meaningful information rather than relying on specific spirit guides. “Of Fairies and Magick” explains why the magickal practitioner must make on the spot decisions on how to behave with the Fair Folk. The chapter “Movement for Ritual, Workings of Ecstatic Trance” gives examples of body movement that can be incorporated into ritual work for those who enter trance most easily through physical exertion. The chapter also looks at Between Actions and how they relate to magickal Workings. “Dream Work,” a topic familiar to all those of the Craft, presents the only means of dream interpretation that allows dreamers to remember more of their dreams than they ever have before and then places the understanding of dreams, myths, and fairy tales into a context to better perceive mundane life as a magickal existence. A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex also includes frank and fresh, sex magickal Workings.

Donald Kraig, author of Modern Magick calls A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex “A literate and in-depth collection of magickal technique and theory, primarily from a Pagan perspective, that adds new impetus to the assertion that modern Neo-Paganism consists of complete spiritual systems. It shows how such paths may include complex theology and high ethical conduct. There are also explicit and complete instructions for spiritual development, including channeling, psychic self-defense, working with spirits, and sex magick. A welcome addition to all who are beginning one of these paths and an excellent supplement to those who already follow the Old Religion.”

A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex will be available the first week in October as an e-book available at Oestarapublishing.com, Fictionwise.com, and Barnes & Noble on-line store. A Compendium of Magickal Practice from Ethics to Sex will be available as a paperback at Lulu.com and Amazon.com the first week of October.

Release date: October, 2009

E-book:  $6.25

Paperback: $18.60

Published by: Oestara Publishing LLC

Paperback ISBN: 978-0-9842166-0-4

E-book ISBN: 978-0-9842166-1-1

Library of Congress Control Number:  2009935982

coming early October!
coming early October!